We have been challenged in devising this framework to suggest clear quantitative indicators of progress or success, and on the normative nature of some of the questions we pose. Our view is that civic activity cannot be reduced to a single set of measurable indicators, because ‘civic’ will look and feel different in different institutions depending on their particular histories, geographies and economies. We recognise that choices of indicators and metrics embed norms and values, and we believe that discussion of norms and values is central to identifying what ‘civicness’ is – while recognising that these norms may vary between institutions. One purpose of the framework is to ensure that these conversations about values and priorities take place and inform civic activities.
We also recognise that excellent practice will take many forms. We would like to complement this matrix with examples of good and promising practice across all the proposed domains and progress levels, so we would particularly welcome real-life examples from across the higher education sector showing how civic impact can be achieved.
We see this framework as a prototype, to be developed as institutions apply it in real-world situations. We would be interested in hearing from institutions about their experiences in using this tool, and working with them to improve and fine-tune the framework.